This study aimed to understand the necessary tenets for a wellness trust in Brooklyn, New York and examined community interest and political will; administrative, financing, and leadership structures; and metrics and data sources to monitor and assess impact. Wellness trusts, modeled after financial trusts support primary health prevention in community settings, provide an innovative opportunity for better community-clinical linkages, collaboration, and impact. Using a multi-method design, key informant interviews were conducted to examine wellness trusts. A content analysis of grey literature was used to analyze community interest and political will. Extant datasets, such as New York City Community District profiles, were reviewed, and a narrative review was used to assess cost-effectiveness of prevention interventions. Findings indicated healthcare issues dominated the health agenda despite recognition of social determinants of health. Braided funding (discrete funds that are coordinated but tracked separately) and blended funding (funds pooled from multiple sources tracked together) are common funding mechanisms. Robust data systems exist to assess impact. Indicators should address social determinants, performance and impact, be measurable, geographically specific, and include communities. Wellness trusts should be sustainable, engage communities, foster collaboration, and have adequate capacity. The Collective Impact Framework, a mechanism to coordinate and maximize efforts, offers this organizational structure. Wellness trusts are promising mechanisms to advance population health.
Tags: Addressing social determinants of health , Data tracking and sharing , Partnership lessons , Publicly Available